The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has announced new proposals for flight recorders and underwater locating devices which aim at facilitating the recovery of an aircraft and of its flight recorders in the unfortunate eventuality of an accident.
The new EASA requirements include the extension of the transmission time of underwater locating devices (ULD) fitted on flight recorders from 30 days to 90 days. EASA also proposes to equip large aeroplanes overflying oceans with a new type of ULD that have longer locating range than the current flight recorders ULDs. Alternatively, aircraft may be equipped with a means to determine the location of an accident within six nautical miles accuracy. In addition, the minimum recording duration of Cockpit Voice Recorders installed on new large aeroplanes should be increased to 20 hours from two 2 hours today.
Patrick Ky, EASA Executive Director said: “The tragic flight of Malaysia Airlines MH370 demonstrates that safety can never be taken for granted. The proposed changes are expected to increase safety by facilitating the recovery of information by safety investigation authorities”.
These new requirements are included in an EASA Opinion which can be found here and, when adopted by the European Commission, will apply to the operation of aeroplanes and helicopters registered in an EASA Member State.